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Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

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ChiO
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby ChiO » May 19th, 2013, 11:27 am

My last day at the series, and what a swingin’ soiree it was with two movies, two Othellos and three Iagos.

ALL NIGHT LONG (Basil Dearden 1962) is based on Othello, recast in the jazz world of London. Rod Hamilton (Richard Attenborough) is throwing a first year anniversary party for jazz pianist Aurelius Rex (Paul Harris) and his ex-jazz singer wife Delia Lane (Marti Stevens) in his swanky loft. Those providing the music include Charles Mingus (he truly is a giant on the Big Screen), Dave Brubeck and John Dankworth. Drummer Johnny Cousin (Patrick McGoohan) wants to split from Hamilton to form is own band, but he can’t get backing unless he brings Delia along. Since she’s retired at Rex’s insistence, Cousin must destroy their marriage to set her free and join him. And how better than to lure Rex into believing that Delia is having an affair with saxophonist Cass Michaels (Keith Michell). All in one night, at one party.

The stars in my eyes (in addition to Dearden, of course) are McGoohan, who raises being a rapacious viper (I swear I saw him flicking his tongue) to a new level as the modern-day Iago; Betsy Blair, who, as McGoohan’s put-upon wife Emily, brings new meaning to “enabler” with her sympathetic rendering of a caring spouse; and, Edward Scaife (NIGHT OF THE DEMON (Jacques Tourneur 1957), THE DIRTY DOZEN (Robert Aldrich 1967)), who makes the Pinewood Studios look every bit as foreboding and depressing as New York City at night.

Speaking of which…

A man has just been sentenced to death.

Okay. I say that that I far prefer B-Noir, the lower the budget the better. Ulmer and Haas, for example, create a galaxy out of their imaginations where money and stars can’t comfortably dwell. Not for lack of trying, but for reasons that are antithetical to my corner of Noir itself. But, there are occasional exceptions when A-Noir (or one with A-Stars) is as perverse and lurid...and depressing (in a good way). SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS (Alexander Mackendrick 1957) is one of the exceptional exceptions.

In brief, from now on, the best of everything is good enough for me.

Tony Curtis (aka Iago) is the sycophantic press agent trying to get into the good graces of a Walter Winchell-type Burt Lancaster (aka Iago) by breaking up the relationship between jazz guitarist (with the ever-hip Chico Hamilton) Martin Milner (aka Othello) and Lancaster’s baby sister, Susan Harrison. As if the evil sliminess of that narrative thread isn’t enough, the relationship Lancaster has with Harrison is downright creepy. And poor Barbara Nichols…never has a blonde bimbo elicited so many emotional reactions at odds with each other. One of the great “the world is corrupt” films noir.

It's a dirty job, but I pay clean money for it.

Every time I see it, I have to rethink Mackendrick’s THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUIT (1951) and THE LADYKILLERS (1955) and find even more dark edges to those purported “comedies”. And James Wong Howe! His photography of seediness barely buried between the bright lights of Broadway…lights that shed no light…is a marvel. The first glimpse of natural light is of Harrison walking away to end the movie. What? Did writers Clifford Odets and Ernest Lehman lose their nerve? Don’t tell me there’s Hope if one finally stands up to Evil.

You're dead, son. Get yourself buried.

And thank you, Dewey.
Everyday people...that's what's wrong with the world. -- Morgan Morgan
I love movies. But don't get me wrong. I hate Hollywood. -- Orson Welles
Movies can only go forward in spite of the motion picture industry. -- Orson Welles

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CineMaven
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby CineMaven » May 19th, 2013, 12:48 pm

Ahhhhhh the "Sweet Smell of Success" never smelled so rancid. I just love it when the big cop tries to rough up the slithery Sidney ( Tony Curtis ) but he gets out of the cop's grip:

"Come back Sidney, I want to chastise you!!"

You need a shower after that movie is over. From what I've read of your accounts, looks like a grand time was had by all! Dewey IS the Master of Our Domain!!!
"You build my gallows high, baby."

http://www.megramsey.com

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JackFavell
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby JackFavell » May 19th, 2013, 2:11 pm

Every time I see it, I have to rethink Mackendrick’s THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUIT (1951) and THE LADYKILLERS (1955) and find even more dark edges to those purported “comedies”.


Ahhh. That's music to my ears. MacKendrick was a master of worlds that spin out of control. It spins especially fast for those who would do the spinning. Heaven help you if you would manipulate fate.

RedRiver
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby RedRiver » May 19th, 2013, 3:35 pm

A few years ago, Dewey himself mailed me a copy of ALL NIGHT LONG after a discussion online. A VHS copy, no less! As always, I was the last person to upgrade to the new technology! Now if you'll excuse me, the stagecoach is leaving for Lordsburg!

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JackFavell
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby JackFavell » May 19th, 2013, 3:45 pm

giggle

All aboard! :D

RedRiver
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby RedRiver » May 20th, 2013, 11:25 am

A young lady contacted me on Facebook and offered to send photos to my cell phone. (A) I wasn't born yesterday. I know what this is about. (B) I don't even know if my phone has that capacity. I've never tried. To update some dialogue from a Bob Hope movie...

"I've given up corresponding with strange women."
"Oh? What made you give it up?"
"Strange women!"

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JackFavell
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Re: Dewey's I WAKE UP DREAMING 2013 at the Roxie

Postby JackFavell » May 21st, 2013, 8:53 pm

OMG! :shock: :shock:


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